Taking a circuitous route into a financial services position can, ultimately benefit your career and – in SEB at least – this appears to be the best route into a new job.
Headcount at SEB, which reported its second quarter results today, was broadly stable in most divisions. Merchant banking – encompassing corporate banking and trading and capital markets – had 2,508 employees at the end of Q2, which is a negligible increase year-on-year.
Staff numbers in its wealth management, retail banking and life insurance divisions also remained broadly flat. However, the amount of money it spent on its employees increased.
This isn’t down to increasing bonuses or pay, before you get excited, but is because it’s taken on 100 former consultants as full-time staff.
In the current climate, banks hiring consultants has been a common practice, since they don’t fall under ‘headcount’ and therefore can be brought in under a separate budget without the onerous sign off process required for recruitment.
Also, it seems like an indirect method of securing new employment.